The District of Sicamous got behind a UBCM resolution which would keep loggers off managed snowmobile trails in the winter. (File photo)

The District of Sicamous got behind a UBCM resolution which would keep loggers off managed snowmobile trails in the winter. (File photo)

Sicamous, snowmobile club want to keep loggers off sled trails in the winter

Resolution going to UBCM asking that recreational use be given priority in peak snowmobile season

The District of Sicamous is helping snowmobile clubs who manage areas of backcountry keep loggers off their trails in the winter months.

At their Feb. 24 council meeting, the district chose to endorse a resolution from the Eagle Valley Snowmobile Club asking that priority be given to recreational use on certain roads and trails during peak snowmobiling season.

The resolution will be submitted to the Southern Interior Local Government Association (SILGA) for endorsement. If successful, it will then go to the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) for support.

The resolution states that some communities, user groups and snowmobilers are finding the management plans they have negotiated with Recreation Sites and Trails BC are being undermined by industrial use of the areas they manage in their peak season. It goes on to ask that UBCM work with the province to request that snowmobile clubs be given sole user status of the trails and forest service roads covered by their management plans between Dec. 1 and March 31 of each year.

Read More: Two Shuswap women share $500,000 lottery win

Read More: Salmon Arm RCMP respond to 17 assault incidents in February

Sicamous councillor and former Eagle Valley Snowmobile Club general manager Gord Bushell said at the very least he hopes the resolution will foster better communication between the industrial and recreational users of the areas.

“Sometimes they just show up and there’s a machine there and you hear nothing about it,” Bushell said. “They plow the road out and we’re stuck until the next season.”

Bushell said the Eagle Valley club is somewhat resilient to limited access due to logging because they manage four trail systems. This year, logging affected the Blue Lake and Queest Mountain areas near Sicamous.

Read More: Shuswap man gets more penalties after breaking fishing prohibition

Read More: Nearly 1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses arriving in Canada this week: Anand

Stu Sorkilmo, the new GM of the snowmobile club, said the road up Queest was plowed for the first six kilometres and, with sledders being unable to ride on plowed roads, there were fewer using it. Sorkilmo said many snowmobilers either lacked tire chains or chose not to tow trailers up to the parking area where the plowed road ends.

The Blue Lake area also had to be accessed using the Owlhead trails due to logging near its usual access point near Malakwa. Sorkilmo said the reduction in easily accessible trails, along with people stranded in B.C. due to COVID-19, led to congestion on the Owlhead trails with twice the users compared to previous years on some days.

Both Bushell and Sorkilmo heard from other clubs around the province who were encountering similar issues with loggers plowing roads.

Noting that only a small percentage of logging roads are managed by snowmobile clubs, Bushell said he thinks a compromise can be reached that keeps loggers working and allows snowmobilers free access to the groomed roads and trails.



jim.elliot@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Snow

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kendra Blakely, of Lake Country, was born an amputee but thanks to the War Amps Child Amputee program she has been able to take part in activities as a child and now into her 20s. (War Amps photos)
War Amps swings in support for Lake Country CHAMP

Key tag program celebrates 75 years of helping amputees like Kendra

A student works in a science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary on Friday, March 12, 2021. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
COVID-19 exposures at 2 Central Okanagan schools

Ellison Elementary and Ècole Kelowna Secondary School are reporting exposures

Nolan Foote becomes the 62nd Rocket to suit up in an NHL regular-season game on Sunday afternoon (Photo: Kelowna Rockets)
Former Kelowna Rockets captain plays first NHL game

Nolan Foote played his first game with the New Jersey Devils on Sunday

Pastor Cliff Siebert of the Okanagan Landing Community Church (centre) addresses some of his congregation in-person for the first time in many months Sunday, April 18, as the church held the first of what they hope will be regular outdoor services with COVID protocols adhered to and obeyed. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
Vernon church hosts outdoor service

Okanagan Landing Community Church put strict COVID protocols in place to hold sermon in back parking lot

The City of Armstrong has been named one of Canada’s 20 best towns to live based on low cost of living and high paying jobs, according to a survey by Numbeo. (Facebook photo/Rhythm Productions)
Armstrong lands among 20 best cities to live in Canada

Survey conducted based on low cost of living and high paying jobs; five other B.C. towns on list

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

Kelowna City Hall. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
City of Kelowna sues alleged vandals

The city is suing two men, alleging they have damaged city property with graffiti over the years

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

New figures show Canadian housing prices outpacing those in other developed countries. (Black Press Media file photo)
Canadian housing prices fastest rising in the world

Relative to 2000, housing prices have risen by a factor of more than 2.5

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
80-million-year-old turtle find on B.C. river exciting fossil hunters

Remains of two-foot creature of undetermined species will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Joudelie King wants to get out and live life to the fullest, but there are places she can’t go because they don’t meet her accessibility needs. (submitted photo)
New online tool provides accessibility map for people with disabilities

The myCommunity BC map provides accessibility info for nearly 1,000 locations in the province

British Columbia’s provincial flag flies in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Wildfire fanned by winds near Merritt prompts evacuation alert

BC Wildfire Service says the suspected human-caused blaze was fanned by winds

The Rogers logo is photographed in Toronto on Monday, September 30, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin
Rogers investigating after wireless customers complain of widespread outage

According to Down Detector, problems are being reported in most major Canadian cities

Most Read